arrogance in bloggingHave you ever met a blogger who was simply an absolute jerk? Well, believe or not, I really hadn’t (at least to much degree) until this past week when I had an experience with a blogger that I found so shocking, so mystifying, so down-right ridiculous that I just had to share my thoughts with you, my incredible friends of this community—so here goes.

It all started when I stumbled upon someone’s blog last week (we’ll call him ‘Blogger X’ to save his named from being recorded in the annals of ‘biggest blogging idiots ever’). While browsing around his site, I could tell the young fellow seemed like he had a few decent ideas and I could therefore possibly pick up some nuggets of truth from his writings. This being said, I did the normal and decided to subscribe to future posts.

But this is when things got interesting. Upon looking for his subscribe button, I noticed only one simple box that asked me to enter my email address so as to receive his ‘Blogging ebook’ as well as future updates. Knowing that I wasn’t interested in his eBook, I then looked for his RSS button. Strangely, it was nowhere to be found. That’s right, the guy didn’t have an RSS feed subscription button. ‘Hmmm’ I thought, ‘What the heck is going on here?’

But considering I’m the type of guy that hates to see newer bloggers (evident by his low Alexa ranking, sparse website, and minimal community involvement) making critical mistakes that could hurt their ability to garner followers and traffic, I looked up the guy’s contact information(only found an email, no forms available) and sent him this exact email:

Hi (Blogger X), I ran across your blog today and liked it, but didn’t see your subscribe buttons. Any help?


Marcus Sheridan

The Sales Lion

Kind letter, right? Yeah, I thought so too. Here was the response, word for word:

Subscribe by email- that or nothing

Yep, that’s right, this was his exact response. No, ‘Thanks for the email’ or ‘Appreciate your interest’ or anything like that. Heck, the guy didn’t even say ‘Hi’, much less sign his name. That was it folks.

At this point, I figured I had three choices:

a. I could tell the guy he was an idiot and that he really didn’t have a clue about blogging nor how to build a community.

b. I could just go my merry way

c. I could ask him why he adhered to such a (stupid) practice

Not being able to walk away just yet, I chose ‘C’, and here’s how the conversation then played out:

Me: Seriously?? Why?

Blogger X: Email is far better for the both of us.

Again, no signature, no ‘thank you’, no nothing. But at this point, I realized I was working with some arrogant kid that was destined to fail in the blogosphere, and so I left it there, surely never to visit his blog again.

9 Critical Blogging Lessons We Mustn’t Forget

As most of you know, ‘community’ is everything on this site. I’m about building relationships (real ones) with awesome people. I believe strongly in the Laws of Reciprocity and Karma. And I also care greatly for those persons kind enough to read and subscribe to my blog.

This is why I contemplated the actions of this jerk for the next few days after the little email exchange occurred. And the more I thought about what the guy said, the more I realized I needed to write this post, and discuss the gross errors of his ways.

This being said, I wanted to briefly mention 9 blogging lessons I was reminded of with this event:

1. Subscribe Buttons: Here’s the deal folks—If you’re not prominently displaying subscribe options by both RSS and Email, you’re missing out. I still read 3 or 4 blogs a week that don’t have an email subscription form. If you fall in this category, stop writing and add what you’re missing TODAY.

2. The Power of ‘Thank You’: I earnestly believe one of the easiest things we can do in life is to simply say ‘thank you’ when we’re shown kindness. It is for this reason that every comment I’ve ever replied to here on TSL gets a ‘thank you’. The same holds true for email contacts. Simply put, there is a power of connection behind those two little words. (The best article I’ve ever read on this subject was written by Ingrid Abboud, and can be found here)

3. Email Signature is a Must: With such free tools as Wisestamp and others, I have no idea how it’s possible someone wouldn’t add a signature their emails. It’s so easy to do and it’s free, so there’s literally no excuse (Tristan Higbee wrote about this). And for the love of Pete, NEVER send a customer or blogger an email without signing your stinking name!

4. It Ain’t All About the Sacred ‘List’: Yes, I do agree with Pat Flynn when he talks about the money for a blogger, at least in many ways, is in their email list. But just because this is often the case, what good does it do to cut your nose off just to spite your face? My friend Blogger X was so obsessed with getting my email that he destroyed a subscriber, a relationship, and much, much more.

5. Guest Posts Mean Nothing to Me: What was funny about this kid is that he recently did a guest post on one of the ‘major’ blogs and was bragging quite a bit about it on his site. Well, I’ve got news for you kid—It’s not that hard to get on those sites anymore, and their quick traffic boosts will do nothing for you if your interpersonal skills stink.

6.  Contact Forms: For such an ‘expert blogger’, I was pretty surprised to see this cat didn’t even have a simple contact form on his website. In fact, his contact page only showed his email address—and nothing more. Personally, I get way more contacts from potential clients and other bloggers on my forms (I use Gravity Forms btw, and they rock) than I do by email.

7. I Don’t Want Your Stupid eBook: Seriously, why would I want a blogging eBook from someone who obviously has very little community and traffic? Although I’m a fan of eBooks when used properly, I’m not a fan of eBooks written by people that have not ‘been there, done that’. Such acts only make bloggers look like desperate hypocrites.

8. Don’t Be a Young Jerk: I think, for whatever reason, many college age, 20-something bloggers often times, in an effort to ‘prove themselves’ and show maturity, end up coming across as conceited and rude. I’ve honestly never understood this pattern of behavior and have seen many other wonderful young folks, like Stuart Mills from Unlock the Door and Christina Crowe from Cash Campfire, who have chosen to walk a much warmer, humble, and friendlier blogging path.

9. Arrogant Pride is a Blog Killer: This is the most important lesson of all folks. No matter how big we get, no matter how many followers we have, we simply cannot allow for arrogant pride to enter our hearts—causing us to think we’re in some way better than those we come in contact with everyday on the web and in life. A classic example of two bloggers doing this the ‘right way’ are Gini Dietrich and Danny Brown. Both have thousands of subscribers to their blogs but each take the time to help as many people as possible, no matter what type of ‘klout’ score a person may have.

At the risk of coming across a little vain myself, Blogger X likely had no idea who I was when he received that email. He likely didn’t understand the substantially large community that reads my blog. He also likely had no comprehension just how many visits other bloggers get from my many mentions and links.

And the sad reality is……He Never Will.

Your Turn

OK, lots of conversation opportunity here folks. First of all, without mentioning the blogger’s name, what’s the rudest experience you’ve ever had online? Also, why do so many choose to take this arrogant path? And finally, feel free to mention a few bloggers you know that take the opposite approach and treat everyone with kindness and equality.

Have a great week everyone!! :-)

245 thoughts on “9 Lessons I Learned From the Biggest Blogging Jerk Ever

  1. I don’t think this guy is alone.

    There are many bloggers out there who try to shock with their delivery rather than with their content Marcus.
    Actually I’m surprised he didn’t add some choice F-bombs in his email just to make it a bit more worthy.

    Now at lot of these arrogant kids (and older ones) do quite well in the blogosphere. Their blunt and rude manners will not bring you and me to their blog but they do develop a huge audience.

    Why do they do this? Well personal development blogs (I assume it was one) are a dime a dozen out there and when you are young with little personal experience, how do you differentiate yourself?

    Smart ones like Stuart and Christina do it one way but others choose to be abrasive, thinking that will shock people to follow them. The sad part, it works.

    • Hmmm, very good point John. It’s like a new age of digital ‘shock-jocks’, and I’m sure you’d agree that it’s growing very, very old. Yelling and screaming will never have the long-term effect that powerful content and rich community will have. In fact, yelling and screaming and being a jerk won’t change lives for the better– and when all is said and done, that’s why we’re involved in this thing called the ‘blogosphere’

      And thank you John for being a model of professionalism btw. You really exude this trait in all you do and say.

      Have a wonderful week bud, I’m very appreciative of all of your support.


      • Wow, in today’s day and age, it’s pretty hard to pull of the shock-jock successfully. This doesn’t seem to be a winning strategy to me. Few people are as good as Howard Stern and Lady Gaga to be able to be shocking and endearing.

  2. First of all, I don’t even know how to get an RSS feed option on my site.

    Secondly, I’ve been told you still have a ways to go and not to be so quick to jump on your bandwagon; hence the late subscription to your feed and the terse response. When I think you are somebody, THEN I might invite you in.

    And yes, that guest post was a pretty big deal to me; so there.

    About the only think that has saved you in this whole mess of a post is you calling me ‘kid’.

    There might be some anonymity in social media but a good rule of thumb is to treat people like you would if you were dealing with them face to face. I am amazed at the number of people who don’t get this.

    Now onto the fact you are actually trolling for new blogs to follow…….what, you have too much free time on your hands or something?

    Good to see you bro, and happy hunting.

    • Haha Bill! You know man, there will be people that actually believe that you really were the guy. And I might just let them think that and then hate you forever, banishing you to the blogosphere’s version of outer darkness ;-)

      Seriously though bud, you always make me smile, as you’re quite skilled with mixing humor and seriousness all together to make for one heck of a comment again and again.

      Have a great week my friend and I’ll be seeing you around the ‘sphere I’m sure ;-)


      • Thank you for making that clear as I did think that and was scratching my head like… uh… thats out of character!

      • I think I am in that band of outer darkness………just like home. That’s why I change my twitter account weekly…………..:)

    • Haha, When I read you comment, I thought OMG, how that “brat” could know about this and fight back with Marcus. Nice joke :D

    • That was funny; almost had me as well. lol

      • Careful Mitch, you’re just egging him on ;-)

  3. What a little #$%^! I would love to know his blog so I could take a look at what’s going on over there. The guy obviously is working in his own little world and doesn’t understand of community or even some manners!

    I haven’t come across anyone like that so far so I can’t share my story. But I’m glad you choose C and wrote him back.

    No doubt he’s destined to fail. Sounds like he’s in a strictly selling niche cause the email list seems so important to him?

    I’ve met so many cool bloggers who are willing to help or share their experiences with me. But I’ll mention just one for now. One blogger I know that treats everyone so nicely is Adrienne Smith (add a .net). She responds to every comment. So genuine and nice. For example she had a guest post on a blog. She wrote a post about it on hers to sent traffic to the guest post. There are a total of 147 comments! The average for the guests post there are 10-30. She understands community.

    • Benny, how are you sir? :-) You know, he wasn’t in a strict selling niche. As a matter of fact, he talked about blogging, and although I’m assuming his goal was to make money with it, he sure as heck doesn’t understand the concept of list-building as he would like to believe.

      I’m glad you mentioned Adrienne Smith here. Her avatar, with that huge smile of hers, says it all. She’s a happy lady that loves to help others. You don’t get any better than that.

      Cheers to you Benny for this great comment and I hope you have a wonderful week. :-)


  4. I loved it Marcus!

    We’ve chatted about this very jerk-blogger-personality before and it it’s funny, I run into these types of situations a few times per month. It’s always the young cats too. I’m sure there are some Mautre-Jerk-bloggers, but it seems like the kids have this chip on their shoulder. Christina and Stu do well in not coming across in this way!

    I can attest firsthand on getting large spikes in traffic from your very mentions/links… thanks! And Thanks again!

    I feel the same away about the ebook thing – why in the world would I want to read an ebook about having the best blog in the world, from a rookie blogger. Keep it real youngsters…talk about the trials and of a rookie blogger…speak within your experience.

    One thing I just haven’t been able to shed is a few months back I tried to help out a young blogger. I noticed he had a racially derogatory word in his comments, left by someone who frequented his site. The word was meant in endearment, but in my opinion, it wasn’t the place to have it, on his “entrepreneurial focussed blog”. When I saw it, I quickly emailed him. To my surprise he left it. Didnt’ touch it or even reply and mention it.

    And today, this blog hasn’t grown very much. I’m sure it’s more because the content isn’t created from experience, but mostly made up stuff that the blogger has never even succeeded or failed with. And to top it off, there’s no community on the blogger’s site. He get’s comments and never even replies. That’s a bad move!

    And to the bloggers that matter…These are the people who impact me, teach me, and make this blogger experience what it it’s for me: YOU of course, Jason Hughes, Rob White, Frank Jennings, Mark Harai, John Felchetto…I completely back your examples given on Gini and Danny [both class acts]. Bill Dorman, Griddy and the list goes on and on…I can literally sit and list names all day.

    Great post Marcus – one that people need to hear. And I love to hear your opinionated mind…when you get fired up – I get entertained :) !


    • JK, thanks for doing what you always do here and adding tremendous thoughts to the conversation.

      You said a phrase that really describes this perfectly–‘Chip on their Shoulder’

      That’s exactly what it is. So many of these young bucks have this chip on their shoulder and they feel that’s the only way to grow and be successful. Frankly, it’s the stupidest business model I’ve ever seen, and not viable over the long haul.

      Your story about the blogger you contacted is a poignant one. What would have been so hard about removing the word?? I know I’ve done that before and will do it again in the future as needed. Isn’t it interesting how the longer you’re in this thing we call blogging the more you can quickly pick up on the folks that ‘get it’ and the ones that simply, well, don’t? It’s like driving through town and seeing a new restaurant open up and without even eating inside you can tell they’re destined to fail within 6 months.

      I know you experience this often, as do I.

      Anyway, GREAT list of folks you mentioned. I know and appreciate each of them. Thanks so much for stopping in and for your constant support and friendship JK.

      Have a wonderful week bud.


      • You know Marcus, the thing that got to me was that I wasn’t asking him to remove the word, because I was offended…nope! It was because his readers would see it and feel uncomfortable.

        Sometimes folks use language in my comments that I don’t use…in those situations I simply change the word. No love lost!

        You have a wonderful week as well. I’ll see you in the web!

    • Dude, you put me up there w/ some quality people; thanks for making me smile.

      • That’s how I see you Bill…I just call it like I see it!

  5. Marcus,

    I assume this is a young kid, living in his parents basement on a diet of Fritos and Coke. It makes me want to stand on my lawn shaking a cane yelling about “damn, kids these days”.

    Of course, like you I understand the power of email lists. It is my goal to get everyone to join mine (in the whole world). But those that don’t…don’t. It does not mean they cannot and should not be part of a community.

    It is sad that these guys are out there and completely clueless on how to interact to build community. I actually feel sorry for guys like this (I am sure thee are a lot of them).

    Anyway, thanks for pointing out the tale of Blogger X, a cautionary one for us all…


    • Hey Steve, so glad you chimed in on this one, as I view you in many ways as the ‘list master’. But like you said, you understand that ‘the list’ ain’t for everybody, and you sure as heck aren’t going to rush visitors off just because they may have different goals with your blog.

      And yes, I feel a bit sad for the guy too. He’s clueless and sadly living in a false reality right now that will surely blow up in his face when the going gets tough (and as you and I both know, it gets tough for all of us).

      Thanks for being so dang awesome Steve. Appreciate the comment and have a great week.


  6. Hi Marcus,
    He does seem young, doesn’t he. It seems the new etiquette for emails these days is to not start off with the person’s name or sign their own name at the end… or capitalize any letters that should be capitalized.

    I can’t recall any rude comments back after I’ve emailed a blogger. Those I’ve contacted have all been extremely nice and helpful. But I did get an email from someone a few years back berating me for a broken link.

    Of course, Marcus, you took this experience and turned it into an education for your readers. I hope your new blogger friend reads this and learns and grows.


    • It is interesting how so much is now ‘acceptable’ with email, isn’t it Peggy? But for me, an email can be a tremendous relationship and branding opportunity, or it can be a huge disaster, as it was for blogger x. Now whether or not he ever reads this, I doubt I’ll ever know. Heck, being that the guy has the whole world figured out why would he come here to learn a thing or two anyway?? ;-)

      Thanks for the comment Peggy, I really appreciate it. :-)


    • See Peggy (and Marcus) I don’t think that stuff is acceptable in emails and will have to recycle an old blog post about it. Emails should start with a name, a greeting, end w/ a closing. Capitalize, punctuation marks are our friends. Software has this neat little tools none as ‘spell and grammar check’ that keep you from reading like an idiot. Also, say NO to bright blue, comic sans messages.

      It is a branding disaster. Imagine someone in your pool business sending emails like that to vendors, contractors, potential or current clients. It’s like advertising you’re unprofessional, young or old. FWIW.

  7. You really did it great Mufasa (Now everyone knows why you have this nickname).

    I have to compare this kid to for example Glen from ViperChill. Glen is young and I can see this kid you are talking about trying to follow his steps, it is obvious from his blog, etc.

    But any time I had an issue or a really dumb questions for Glen, about one of his FREE plugins, he responded and even got me in contact with his developer guy. And I bet he receives 100 times more e-mails than this kid.

    The person you mention is a little dumb a$$hole that will go down faster than he can register for a domain name.

    And as you said, getting on the blog he posted at is not all that hard lately, they have been posting anyone who will write for them.

    You learned 9 lessons from this, I am sure he didn’t learn any!!!

    • You know Bran, you’ve inspired me with this one, as you’ve now given this problem with the ‘young bloggers’ a name– The Glen Allsop Disease . They see Glen with his arrogant air and think that’s the key to them making it big as well, but what they don’t realize is that:

      1. Glen gives back big time to his community behind the scenes, just as you mentioned.

      2. Glen is ‘confident’, not a ‘jerk’

      3. Glen has earned the right to come across a little arrogant, because he has ‘been there, done that.’

      And yeah, I don’t think this kid is going to make it long term in the blogosphere. Heck, with all the competition there now is, attitudes like this will be thrown by the wayside quicker than ever.

      Thanks for stopping by Sharpy, you rock lady. :-)


  8. What’s sad is that Blogger X not only doesn’t get blogging, community building, attracting new followers etc.

    He doesn’t get friendliness, respect or gratitude. And that’s a shame.


    • He doesn’t get friendliness, respect or gratitude. And that’s a shame.

      Very well said Wim. Forget about blogging for a minute, he doesn’t understand simple laws of nature and happiness– friendliness and gratitude. Wow, that’s a really great point.

      Thanks so much for commenting!!


  9. Hi Marcus

    Just like off-line you meet people with no manners, so we meetsome on-line with the same lack too!

    I have had 2 rude emails from the same person following a post I did pointing out some facts (thoroughly researched by me) about the difference between genuine natural products and others that could cause some harm to people with sensitive skin. As they were medical reports and I have a nursing background, I sat up, took notice and duly included them in a post.

    Thought I was being helpful and most people thanked me for the information and left my blog better informed than when they came. However, this guy (didn’t use his name just “admin”) berated me for writing the post and was quite abusive. He of course produced products from the very plants I had warned about! I did not name the products just what to look out for.

    I deleted the email and although a bit taken aback by the rude manner in which the email was written, hoped that would be the end of it. Not so. I then did a safety article on soy candles just before Christmas. Another rude email berating me again for writing a post like this when there were much bigger issues to worry about than soy candles!

    I had to smile. The guy (gave first name and knew it was same person as from same farming address) was again venting his anger on me for whatever reason. I didn’t answer either email as they were written in such a way that any reasonable dialogue did not seem to be the objective of the correspondence.

    Some people just seem to be angry and I sure wasn’t going to get in the line of fire! Everyone else I have visiting my site and whom I interact with in the blogging community are the opposite; helpful, encouraging and people I enjoy being around.

    Patricia Perth Australia

    • Isn’t it funny Patricia how rude commentors often times don’t leave all their info?? Kinda ironic I think. :-)

      But you really seemed to handle this jerk quite well. It’s obvious he has an axe to grind and is completely unhappy with his business, and thus used you as a vent. So, I guess on the bright side, maybe you helped distract him for a few minutes from his own imperfections while he berated you. ;-)

      You’re a class act Patricia, that much is certain. And I greatly appreciate you stopping by today and I hope your week is a wonderful one. :-)


    • Patricia, some people just aren’t happy and they never will be. That’s truly a shame to go thru life like that.

      I mean really, who could be rude w/ Patricia………..all things lavender……:)

  10. Now I’m really curious who this Blogger X is. Emails welcome. :)

    There are sadly a lot of bloggers who do this sort of thing. With exception to #2, #8, and #9, some do this stuff simply because they don’t know any better. But usually they’re still nice people behind it all and open to suggestions.

    The others are just a little too immersed in the idea that all they have to do is create a blog, write (or pay someone to ghost write) some mediocre content, act all bad-ass, and boom they will make tons of money online. And who knows, maybe they will with people who don’t know any better. But they’ll never become a true authority or expert, and eventually get outed for the kind of person they really are.

    • Guess I’ll have to PM you Kristi ;-) You’re right about the fact that most bloggers simply don’t know. This is why I try to go out of my way to help the ones that struggle with this, just as others have helped me.

      You made a really good point about the fact that bloggers with an attitude and crap content will NEVER become a true authority or expert. This is the part that’s key. Yeah, sure, anyone can have novelty and some success at first. And anyone can write guest posts. But build a community and last in this business? Well that’s a whole other ball game.

      Thanks so much for stopping by Kristi and your great comment. Have a wonderful week.


    • I’m with Kristi- on all counts, but especially on identity!
      The curiosity is killing me, but I’ll allow him to remain anonymous, arrogant, and on his way to blogging oblivion. :)

      Great post Marcus!

  11. Hey Marcus, it’s mind boggling that this type of thing happened to you. Talk about a jackass! As a society, we are definitely less accomodating these days. Some folks just find it more fun to be rude, I guess. Apparently, this guy cares not if he has subscribers or commenters. Well, if you don’t, what really is the sense of blogging? I myself am always flattered when someone leaves a comment, or takes the time to subscribe. It’s good to be thankful for that, cause as you implied, it may not always happen.

    Thanks for this list, I’ll double check everything. The last thing I want to do is make it hard for someone to contact me or access my material. I always remember that the easier it is, the more likely they are to do it. Yeah, the learning curve is there, but there is absolutely no reason to make these basics a challenge for your readers…

    • You’ve made a really great point/lesson here Joe– the easier we make it on our readers to perform simple actions, the more successful we’ll be. If someone has to ‘search’ for anything, then we’ve made it too hard. It should all be right there, out in the open, and easy to navigate, manage, and understand.

      Anyway, thanks, as always, for your kind support Joe. You really seem to be growing nicely with your blog and stepping it up. Proud of you man.


  12. Hi Marcus,

    I’m a new blogger myself, so I get frustrated when other new bloggers try to take shortcuts by abandoning best practices and good manners. It takes a tremendous amount of time and effort to build a community from the ground up. I could have the most amazing content in the world, but without readers, it doesn’t matter.

    As I fill my reader with blogs, I definitely notice when a blog doesn’t have an RSS button–I usually move on. (I will admit, if I really like the content, I will search for it in Google Reader and subscribe directly from there.)

    Getting and responding to comments is absolutely the most fun part of blogging! Why someone would want to miss out on it…boggles the mind. Too much focus on selling something, I suppose.

    There are so many readily available resources for new bloggers that contain excellent advice. Making mistakes is OK as long as you learn from them. But ignoring the advice of others, who are both experienced and successful, is a shortcut to failure.


    • Wise words Marianne, well said.

      Considering you’re just breaking in to the blogging world but understanding the importance of community speaks volumes for your potential in the blogosphere. You’re right, ‘content’ is only part of the battle to success. There is so much more one must do well, with community being first and foremost.

      But good luck with your blog Marianne and hopefully you know just how much I appreciate your comments and support.


      Marcus :-)

  13. This is interesting, finally we get a chance to vent out loud about lousy blogs. I visited the blog where an “A List blogger” told me this…now, I don’t know how many of you would believe this but he actually replied this to my comment “Terrorist, just stay away from my blog”. All this just for because I didn’t agree with some of his “A List Ideas”.

    Well, I was truly offended I reported his Fan Page (under abuse!) (evil laugh!)
    You win some, THEY lose some!

    I enjoyed your post a lot!

    • Hey Hajra,

      I find that reply to you despicable and I can’t believe that someone would say that. I don’t know what the topic at hand was nor how the discussion went about – but as long as it was courteous and your ideas were presented in a polite manner – there is no reason whatsoever to reply to someone like that.

      Sorry that happened to you.

      • To make it more clear, the blogger was talking about the importance of live chat with your readers, I thought that was quite innovative but not a necessary one. But yes, there is no reason to get personal.

      • Hear Hear Ms. Griddy….btw Hajra, have you been to Griddy’s blog?? It’s only the greatest community on Earth, so make sure you give it a look, as it’s also my favorite cyber ‘meet and greet’. :-)

    • Wow Hajra. OK girl, you’ve GOT to message me who the ‘A-lister’ was!! :-)

      But this much I can promise you– No matter how often you disagree with me in the future, I will NOT call you a terrorist. ;-)

      Come back and see us again Hajra, we’d love to have you.


      • She is too pretty to be a terrorist, but she better e-mail me that name too :)

        • Bran, I think you should become a blogging private investigator…there’s certainly a market :))))

          • Brankica

            I am too loud to be “private”. That is why they always kept me with the big guns :)

  14. Astonishing, Marcus!

    Common courtesy has nothing to do with blogging practices, but everything to do with the inherent character of a person. I can’t imagine being so terse or rude to a person who took the time to contact me BECAUSE THEY LIKED MY WORK and WANTED TO SUBSCRIBE TO IT!

    You sent every indication of being an admirer of this person, and they respond by acting like you’re an inconvenience to them? No thank you. He can enjoy posting to himself and his mom.


    • He can enjoy posting to himself and his mom.

      LOL Joe, I’m liking your style man!! :-)

      Yeah, astonishing is right. Mind-boggling is quite appropriate as well. Oh, and utterly forehead-slapping could fit too ;-)

      Thanks for the great comment and the laugh Joe. Come back again man, would love to have more of these.


      • Haha! Glad you enjoyed it, and glad to be here. Lately I have seen your name EVERYWHERE I go on the Internet, so I figured it was time to finally check you out. :) Glad I did. You’ve got a great site, and I’m happy to be a new RSS subscriber.


  15. Hey Mufasa,

    I’m not quite sure what to say here – should I feel sorry for this kid or should I just presume that having written one or 2 posts on a big blog has given him reason to be arrogant. Either way – it’s inexcusable and it shows a severe lack of social manners both online and off – for as we all know – much of what we do or act online is often representative of how we are offline. At least that’s how I am.

    This shows me that this blogger has no interest in building a community or a loyal readership. It shows me that he has no interest to connect. And although he may be a nice guy for all we know – he certainly doesn’t portray it through his social skills.

    I welcome constructive criticism and good ideas. I also welcome questions from bloggers asking why I do or don’t have certain things. This blogosphere allows us to learn from each others for surely there’s not one blogger out there who knows it all – not even those so called A-listers who to me differ for each person.

    Had you been rude in your email – I could understand such a response. But that’s not your style and your email is certainly very cordial and polite – not only that – but it’s someone (you) that he could benefit from. You are interested to subscribe to his blog – he can only benefit from a new avid reader – which of course he now lost.

    I recently received an email from a blogger who wanted to interview me. In his email – he didn’t even address my by my name, didn’t get into the details of the interview and didn’t have a proper signature. So I went and visited his blog to see what it was about and all. I replied to him as I would anyone – politely, and addressing him by his first name and asking more about the focus of the interview. Once again he replied – without a hello, without my name anywhere and although is kind – it shows no personal touch what so ever! I still haven’t replied back. Once is forgivable but twice – come on!

    I also had that happen with an A-lister blogger a while back. I sent an very kind email and the only reply I got back was answer with no hello – no nothing – just a 6 or 7 word answer and that was that! Grrr….

    Anyhoo, thanks for sharing this with us and it shows a lot of class on your part not to have mentioned his name. Hats off to you.

    Sorry that happened to a wonderful guy like you. But I guess we all have to get that taste of sour and sore at some point eh?!

    Have a super day M.

    • Hey Griddy, you know it absolutely makes my day whenever you stop by here. :-)

      Your theme to this excellent comment that kept coming to me was ‘social skills’. Whether it was the rude blogger that responded to me, and the ‘odd’ interviewer that couldn’t seem to even introduce himself, social skills are far and away one of the most important skills a blogger (or human being for that matter) can have. And as you already know, I feel you are the mecca of what ‘social web’ is all about, as shown in your amazing blog community and the fact that everyone seems to love ‘Griddy’. (Or maybe it’s just the shades…yeah, that could be the secret too ;-) )

      But now that I think about it, it sure would be nice if someone wrote about this subject at some point and really helped other bloggers understand the keys behind ‘social web’ and building a community, don’t you think?? ;-)

      Have a wonderful Tuesday G. :-)


    • Co-signed Ingrid. I cannot imagine replying to anyone in such a manner, it’s unsocial and unprofessional. I’ve gotten a few of those emails, tire kickers or general questions, always take the time to reply to a legitimate inquiry (someone not selling me SEO or web development packages ;-)). It’s not even about them, it’s me and I just hope I never behave in such a way.

  16. Shoot I forgot to thank you for that awesome mention of my guest post on social media manners over at Danny Brown’s :))). Much appreciated my dear friend. Good of you link to it and say what you said.

    Okay Bye again haha

    • What can I say G? That guest post you did for Danny was amazing– it really was. (Plus I saw it dropped out of his top 5 commented posts, so maybe we can fix that ;-) )

  17. Marcus

    I understand where the guy is coming from – in that he wants to build a list. From that perspective RSS subscribers are not so useful.

    However a piece of advice I was once given: You are not your customer. If your customers want to consume your content via RSS, give them an RSS feed.

    And the rudeness thing is just utterly stupid. Enough commenters have pointed out already how it will affect the guy’s future chances of building an audience/community whatever.

    If the guy you’re talking about is reading, here’s a couple of stories for him:

    1) Pat Flynn. Very popular blog. High Alexa rank. Lots of traffic. All round nice guy.

    I sent him an email before Xmas about something that i thought he may or may not want to know. He sent a reply back with a ‘Hey Paul’ kind of greeting and a ‘Thanks for that, Pat’ kind of signature.

    2) Gary V

    About two years ago I listened to an interview with Gary Vanyerchuk when he was mainly a wine guy and was just stepping out into social media and the journey that would lead to Crush It, Thank You Economy and beyond. One of the things that sticks in my memory is that one of his daily tasks was to answer every email he got via Wine Library TV. Some days it was the business end of a 1000 emails.

    Lack of manners is one thing. Blind stupidity is another.

    Have a great week.


    • Paul, I can always count on you for pointing out some incredibly stellar facts man, and this comment was no different. Pat and Gary both live and die by their communities and the interaction they have with them, so the fact that you’ve mentioned them here was perfect.

      And while I have you Paul, congrats on being a model to everyone as to how to grow a blog the right way. Your community is exploding over that at OSAT, and I’m thrilled for you.

      Thanks for all,


  18. Hey Marcus,

    First time reader here. I appreciate the fact that you reached out and tried to offer a bit of advice and help. If dude wants to roll through life like that, then he’ll be a lonely old man with regret.

    I’d like to mention Jacob Sokol at He’s doing big things in a very positive way and seems like a cool cat to chill with.

    Thanks for the great tips.

    Life is good, Live it up!

    • Hey Brad, a huge WELCOME to you my friend!! :-)

      Thanks for mentioning Jacob here. I’ve not heard of him and will have to check him out.

      Oh, and your tweet was awesome today man. Loved it. :-)

      Hope to see you around these parts more in the future Brad.


  19. I find this post to be so ironic and misinformed I am not sure where to begin.

    Let me start by saying I am sorry this guys responses were jerk like, but what he said, is not entirely incorrect, he just isn’t using the right tools, hence his “download my ebook” garbage.

    Let me explain, you see the world of blogging and the world of marketing have crossed. Bloggers are no longer the only ones using blogs. Some of us bloggers out there are actually marketers.

    We don’t care about subscriber counts. We care about lists! Ever heard in your travels ‘the money is in the list’? Its not a myth! Now some bloggers try to argue and say a subscriber feed is a list, but the fact is its not. Sure you can make blog posts that end in your subscribers inbox, but can you email those subscribers? No thats the long and short of it.

    See what this guy didn’t know is there is a wordpress plugin that allows you to add a form to your page that lets the user subscribe to the blog by email. Whats even better is the plugin also gives the owner of the blog a form that lets them email the subscribers privately whenever they want. So not only can they post blog entries and have readers attention, but they can also email those same readers. Once, twice, even fifty times a day.

    I don’t actually remove my rss feed from my code so it can still be found, but it is not displayed on my blog at all, simply a “subscribe by email” form is displayed.

    The reason I made mention of the cross between bloggers and marketers, is marketers do not care about the blog at all. We are not trying to build a community as you seem to think thats the only reason for a blog. Its not the only reason. We are not trying to build communities we are trying to build mailing lists. Thats the long and the short of it.

    Despite the fact my newest blog is still… new, the practice works well. I have built up tens of thousands of mailing lists using this very practice. I have countless tens of thousands of people across hundreds of accounts on dozens of social networks. Because of that I don’t need a community, I can email 100,000+ people at any given second and drive them to any given promotion or product I feel the urge to.

    And every email I send, has an opt out notification. Meaning you can unsubscribe from whatever mailing list, or whatever membership site, or whereever else I may have your email from. These are optin emails, not spam.

    So to think this is “just a kid” is not hardly accurate. Its more likely a marketer who realized instantly at your asking the question you did, that you were not interested in being on his list, only a blog subscriber. The second that happened, he because short with you knowing it was a waste of time to explain it and have you decide to not signup anyways.

    I am a marketer, this is not the right way to behave. But don’t think for a second that makes it “childish” or makes one who does it a “child” because that an awful big leap to go from rude marketer who knows his job, to child who doesn’t know bull dog weasel about anything.

    • Bruce

      Interesting perspective. And I agree different people have different end goals in mind and using their blogs as tools for those end goals – which may lead to different uses of the blog as a tool.

      Even if you’re coming from a more marketing aspect though, there’s a popular meme out there that says that it takes somewhere between 7 and 10 points of contact to make a sale. The opt-in process is no different – it’s effectively a sale. You give your consent to be emailed, and your email address, in exchange for an eBOok. Or an MP3. Or a course. Or something valuable.

      Therefore bloggers that don’t use RSS are potentially stopping people who might be FUTURE subscribers from getting those further exposures to content and messages.

      There’s another point too – I don’t know who Marcus is talking about (have no clue), but isn’t it possible that his ‘opt-in’ bonus might not be attractive to potential customers and by not having an RSS feed it’s also possible that he’s stopping people who might enjoy and learn from his content from accessing that in a manner convenient to them – and then maybe down the line he’ll create a different Opt-In bonus and the relationship that he’s built up with the readers of his blog in that time frame could lead to a healthy number of sign ups?

      Again, I’m theorizing because I don’t know who we’re talking about…but whatever viewpoint you look from (Community vs List), his actions still seem harmful to his presumed goal. Which is to build a list.

      You don’t have to do one or the other either – see Pat Flynn, Glenn Allsop, Corbett Barr, Chris Garrett and many, many others for successful models of how it can be done.

      Be interested in your thoughts.


      • Well fortunately for me, I believe HEAVILY in the ability to get my content, cause my content is damn good. LOL

        I have many OTHER options for getting my content. I offer it on facebook via networked blogs, I offer it on yousaytoo, I offer it on, I offer it many ways. But all of the ways I offer it also give me the ability to also email the user. If they don’t get subscribe its because they don’t know all major browser make this possible from within the browser without a link on the page, or they don’t want to join any of the number of ways I have left.

        To mean, that means my content was not good enough for them to be bothered.

        Rudness is a whole different matter, there is no excuse, but some people are just rude.

        And not to out anyone, but the person outed themselves when they left a comment on this post saying “And yes, that guest post was a pretty big deal to me; so there.”

        I may be misunderstanding, but it seemed fairly clear to me.

        • I would not agree with you, Bruce. Number one the boy is a blogger (trying to be one anyway). Number two, he can remove his RSS a billion times, but the way he responded is what makes him a jerk!

          • I fully agree with that actually Brankica, I actually said “rudeness is a whole different matter” but, if the person in question is who I think it is (note my comment to the outing themselves) I have had dealings with them elsewhere and its out of character from what I know of him. Make no mistake if it is who I think it is the person is not a child or “boy” in the traditional sense of age, perhaps in actions, but not in age.

            That aside, who says he is trying to be a blogger? I own many dozens of blogs, but would never call myself a blogger. I am a marketer who owns blogs :)

        • Bruce, Bill Dorman, who said that about the guest post, was being a goof ball. That’s Bill, and so if he was here right now, he’d say, ‘Gotcha!’ ;-)

          • I realized that after reading your replies. I kind of feel a fool :)

            • I was only supposed to fool Marcus because he’s so gullible; I didn’t mean to drag you in this mess with him……..:)

              • Ha ha, Marcus gullible? That is a good one, gotta get him with something, will be contacting you for a prank we gotta pull on him :)

                • I’m all in………….:)

            • I was kind of like “woah really… Bill is talking like this”… kind of why I defended the “blogger X” LOL .

              • Thanks for having my back bro; Marcus sure didn’t. You saw how quick he was to kick me under the bus…………..:)

      • Paul, to your excellent points here that I couldn’t say close to that well.


        DITTO :-)

    • Bruce, welcome to The Sales Lion. I think it’s your first time here and I give props to any man that walks into a new place and throws some good jabs. Seriously, well done mate.

      Although you are making some nice points above regarding the ‘list’, you seem to forget that I strongly believe in ‘the sacred list’ as well (see above).

      This blogger, who is young, and who blogs about blogging (not marketing in the same text as you use it, is trying to build readership. That much was clear because he was writing articles about how to do it. This being said, the guy was way off base. If you’d seen his blog, I think your comment would have been quite different.

      But let’s forget about Blogger X for a second. My biggest disagreement with you Bill is your use of ‘WE’— As in ‘we marketers’. You see, I see myself as a marketer. I own a highly successful swimming pool company that currently sports the most popular swimming pool blog in the world— all because of content marketing. And do I believe in community? Dang straight I do. It’s huge to me. It’s what tells my customers they want to spend 55k with me versus 45k with the next guy. It’s also why I have a monster list of leads and customers. But again, community is an integral part to all of it.

      Honestly Bruce, I think you’re a marketer, yes, but not the type that average Joe business owner understands. You build lists and you do it well. And because of that, you sell things. But to think that your system and methodology is the correct means for success across the board to ‘market’, well….that I too find ironic and misinformed. ;-)

      Again Bruce, appreciate your thoughts. It’s a wonderful thing to cordially disagree with passion.

      Please keep coming back and thanks for the comment.


    • “Its more likely a marketer who realized instantly at your asking the question you did, that you were not interested in being on his list, only a blog subscriber. The second that happened, he because short with you knowing it was a waste of time to explain it”

      Bruce, like some other replies, the rudeness is rudeness but the business strategy issue, that’s part of my concern to add to the excellent points made by Paul and Marcus. One, I totally agree with you that there are 100s of reasons and purposes to blogging, often having nothing to do with the ‘kumbaya’ of blogging community. True that, which is why I quoted your statement.

      The thing with me is the assumption that an RSS or blog subscription is interested in ONLY that. Per Paul’s comments, it’s kinda like dating.. maybe someone wants to get to know you a little better, maybe they are genuinely interested in more but are taking baby steps. (If you don’t want’ babies’ – fine.. ‘your blog, your rules’ is another popular meme.) Also per the curation of lists, seeing how quickly I’d opt out of anything that contacted me with irrelevant pitches or sent me two, three or 50 times a day, period. So not sure that a one-time hit of email addresses is more useful that a loyal, regular reader. Not saying that everyone unsubs from your lists, again.. just a different approach. FWIW.

      • as much as I enjoy the attention, please understand what I said in my quote is more accurate to how I felt :)

        ‘Bruce Bates May 3, 2011 at
        I was kind of like “woah really… Bill is talking like this”… kind of why I defended the “blogger X” LOL .’

        • Bruce, not jumping down on you at all.. rather enjoyed all the discussion as to blogging for different reasons; as much as I love a certain style, I get that there are others that do work for their purposes. And I just liked Marcus advice, for almost any blogger, jerk or not. BTW I knew Bill was joking, think him hilarious.. just wish he’d save the funny for comments on MY blog. I don’t think Marcus would mind. ;-)

          • Awww baby, you know I save my best ‘stuff’ for you…………..:)

            • Sure you say that to all the bloggers. ;-)

              • But under a different name……..

                  • Don’t tell anyone, but I’m the real Sales Lion……..

  20. Hi Marcus,

    That blogger does sure sound like a jerk! Shouldn’t he be nicer to people commenting on his blogs?! What an idiot!


    • Yeah, but hey, he’s got time. We’ll just wish him the best and hope that he soon realizes that kindness will take him much farther in life.

      Thanks for stopping by Harriet, as always. :-)


  21. Joe

    I’d sure like to get back to pools, content marketing, this stuff and the last couple of titles seem too contrived and now too negative.

    Really like Marcus and his blog just think we may have taken some paths that arent’ as constructive. I’m sure I may be off on this but how about some keys on blog web site design or how to add RSS..

    Thanks for listening.

    • I appreciate your comment Joe, but this article, if you really read it, was about how to treat your blogging community, and tips that are often forgotten by bloggers/content producers. Every point I made here is something I’ve also done in the swimming pool industry, and so the principles herein apply to every niche. Is the post negative? Well, yes and no. It takes a hard look at what happens to some bloggers/businesses when they become arrogant. Haven’t you seen businesses become arrogant before Joe? Of course you have. And what were the results? That’s right, lost business and sales– Pure and simple.

      This guy lost business and sales because of his lack of social skills. And such can happen to anyone that is not very careful.

      Thanks for stopping in Joe, and hope you’re week is a great one.


  22. Dia

    Hi Marcus,

    I personally have seen some blogs that don’t hae rss nor subscribe by email. I usually view such bloggers as inexperienced. For me what is worse is sending someone an email and never getting a response. This tends to happen with usually blogs, but at the end, I personally don’t let such things get to me. However, I agree he could’ve been kinder in his reponse. At least, he could have mentioned “Hi and thanked you for your email.” There are many bloggers who are very kind and take the opposite route such you JK, Bryan, Frank, yourself, and many others…. It makes one love to be in such communities. Thanks Marcus for sharing

    • Good points Dia. I don’t look down on anyone for not having RSS or email, I just see it as someone who is just getting going and needs a little help. I thought that such was the case here until I got shown otherwise.

      But you’re right in the fact that just a few simple words of appreciation can make all the difference and go a long ways.

      Thanks so much for stopping in Dia. Appreciate your support man.


  23. Hi Marcus,

    It’s not common to see a blog without RSS subscriber option. That is his goal of collecting email address as his priority. The problem with him is he doesn’t have basic manners and courtesy to answer an email with good intention. That’s the sad part.

    Are youngsters nowadays focus entirely on earning money while forgetting building a community is extremely important in an online business?

    You are just too kind Marcus. If you have mentioned his name, no doubt he will be having a hard time trying to restore his tarnished reputation.

    Thanks for sharing your experience and more bloggers should read up this post as a caution.



    • Hey Lye, I’m glad you stopped by man, as you are a great example of someone who is always kind and friendly to their audience in the blogosphere. And besides, isn’t showing kindness wayyyy better than being a jerk??? ;-)

      Keep being awesome my friend, and have a tremendous week bud.

      Thanks again,


  24. ok…heres the deal.

    I have a similar situation with a very prominent blogger. You know him, you’ve read him. I want to write about our interaction, but I feel the post will not have the oomph without naming names.

    In fact, as I was reading your post (the first part) I thought that naming names would have made it better. Now, I know that taking someone down a peg who has no pegs to be taken down from is not fun nor does it make you brave. You’ve chosen the wiser path and I commend you for it.

    But something in me wants to know who this blogger was….more importantly. Im really looking for some guidance regarding my situation.

    Should I name names?

    • Yes, give us names!!!!!

    • OK Dino, this is a GREAT question man, and I want to thank you for even presenting it here. In my opinion, here are two definitives in your case:

      1. If you say the person’s name, it will likely be your biggest post ever.
      2. If you say the person’s name, you will likely end up regretting it.

      Does that make any sense? Probably not, but it’s what my gut tells me will happen. Let me ask you this Dino— Since your issue with this guy, have you attempted a second time to rectify the problem? Is it at all possible that there could be a remedy that wouldn’t lead to WWIII? I’m sure you’ve thought of this, but had to ask.

      Either way, I wish you luck my friend. Make sure to chew on it, and whatever it is, do it to help, not to hurt….if that makes sense.


      • This Marcus. I’ve gotten my rant on a few times and haven’t named names, no matter how tempting. Comments may reveal some details but even then, I’m careful not to disrespect someone that really, I don’t know. It’s not my way and I would regret it.

  25. Hey Marcus, reading this I felt a little bewildered. Like – for real?!

    It completely annoys me when I find a blog with interesting content and no email subscription option – often that’s enough for me to go looking for something else!

    I will say that I appreciate your reaching out to him with advice. I’ve been on the receiving end of such advice from larger bloggers (Kristi Hines from and Karol K from both come to mind, though there have been others), and it’s been very much appreciated.

    When someone is kind enough to offer you some feedback, and expresses that they like your stuff, to be that rude to them – I just don’t get it.

    • Yeah, well put Danny, it’s pretty mystifying that people would act like this, but alas, such is life I guess. It’s cool though that like you said, there are some great people out there. Kristi is an excellent example. I don’t know Karol but will have to check her out too.

      My question is what would happen if everyone had this mentality to help, help, and help some more?? I tell ya, it would be amazing.

      Thanks for the comment and AWESOME guest post my friend. Hope you got a lot out of it. You really did a tremendous job.


      • That really would be amazing. Well, the only way to make a change is to lead by example, Marcus, so we’re lucky to have you leading the charge!

        And Marcus, the guest post was a wonderful experience for me – I was really touched by the heartfelt comments and discussion. Thank you so much for having me!

  26. Hey Marcus,

    People on the internet never cease to surprise me. :)

    I pity the kid for not knowing how he’s wasting his time with his blog with an attitude like that. Customer service skills, much?

    On behalf of my sometimes ignorant generation who think they can totally own entrepreneurship and technology, I’m disgusted by this guy’s behaviour. What a loser!

    I really agree with Pat Flynn too, and one thing I remember he talked about in a podcast was how you need to give your readers a range of options so they can stay connected to you. Not everyone wants to subscribe by email, but a lot of people may want to “like” your FB page, so give them that option! People need to understand that being diverse and giving people what THEY want is the initial step to earning their trust. Sheesh.

    I LOLed at Brankica’s reply up there (“yes, give us names!”) hahaha she is the queen of blogging drama!

    Excellent blog post, and great way to tie in real life experience with these 9 points!

    • Hey Elise, thanks for stopping in girl, I could have easily included you in the ‘young folks that rock’ list with Stu and Christina, and appreciate the fact that you’re able to recognize this odd trend with some of the younger bloggers.

      BTW, Bran is the queen of drama, isn’t she?? ;-) Of course, when you have about 35 guns in your kitchen cabinets, I guess it’s no so hard to pick a fight! ;-) lol

      Have a great day Elise, and thanks for bringing your smile on over to this little community.


      • This was the comment that got me subscribed to more then just this thread. :)

  27. Marcus

    Thanks for sharing. He is lucky you have class and left his name off!

    What I am not listed as a young blogger, lol! Kidding of course!

    I have lucked into your community and haven’t come across these bloggers YET!


    • Ha! Yeah, that’s true Rajka, this community has naturally formed as people with liked-minded intentions to build others up have bonded over time.

      Blogger X, as long as he continues down this path, will never experience the true fruits of what the words ‘online community’ really mean.

      Thanks so much for stopping in! :-)


  28. I am glad to say that I haven’t had an experience like that one.
    Even if he didn’t want to give you an RSS subscription option I do think he could be civil about it and thanked you for your input and explained why he wasn’t offering that option.

    I have seen others that don’t have a RSS button because they want everyone to use their email subscription, which I think is fine if they have a valid reason for it.

    Great advice on your 9 tips btw Marcus, I know I do my best every day to follow them and hopefully match up on most points.

    • Hey Daniel, always great to hear from you man. I agree with you, it’s OK if he’s anti RSS, but at least have come decency and courtesy, as being a jerk just won’t get you very far in life.

      Glad you like the tips man. Cheers mate and have a great rest of your week–


      • Hopefully he will learn some day.
        Maybe in a few years he will come back to the internet world and be a little more mature.

  29. Gini Dietrich

    I am so astounded by his response that I had to read it aloud to Mr D.

    W. T. H.

    I really hope he hasn’t guest blogged for us. I will be really embarrassed.

    P.S. I was scared to see my name under arrogant pride. Sure, Danny fits that l, but me?!? Imagine my surprise. :)

    • Tangent alert – Ok, now you got me thinking more about guest blogger etiquette. What if someone is rude in comments replying, doesn’t bother to reply, what if the guest post is icky, or not of quality for the blog – do you say something? IDK. And also, WTH? indeed.

      • Hey I actually removed a guest post because the guy would not reply even though it is a must on my blog! And Kristi Hines posted about this recently. But anyway IDK WTH :)

        • Read, commented and tweeted Kristi’s post.. similar thoughts to one I did on being a guest blogger. I’ve seen a few on other blogs and think.. this blogger should know better from this host, and I wonder about the blog host.. will they not invite this person back, if the blog quality and engagement aren’t there? Interesting you removed a post, I like that along w/ Kristi’s stand to remove the links. WTG and since I’m a dork… MT4thBWY. ;-)

    • Mr. D got read something from TSL??? SWEET!

      And yeah, you and Danny are the classiest of the classy Aunt Gini, I really meant that. :-)


  30. G’Day Marcus,
    There really are some rude buggers around. Frankly, they’re not worth the effort. But they aren’t all “young and foolish.”

    One very well known blogger–he’s mentioned in a few of the best blogger books–was promoting one of his products. It appealed to me, But the promo was all about what was in the package rather than what benefits users would get from it.

    I sent a perfectly straightforward email saying I was interested but would like to know what I could expect from the product if I invested.

    The answer was short but not sweet. “You’ll get out of it what you put into it.” was the response of the well-known blogger. No “thanks for your email” or any modicum of politeness. As you’d understand mate, this really resonated with my background in instructional design and all that Jazz,I didn’t buy the product and unsubscribed from his blog

    In another case, another popular blogger announced on his blog that I’d won a program of my choice from his suite of programs. He chose one subscriber each month for such a prize.
    I waited for “more information.” Nothing came. After two weeks I sent him a gentle email asking what I should do. He replied that he’d be in touch.
    After another two weeks I sent another gentle reminder. Once again, he promised to be in touch. That’s over 12 months ago. I unsubscribed from his blog too.

    I gotta sat Marcus, that after 30 years running an offline business, it seems to me that the good ole www. seems to have a disproportionate number of marketers who are just a bit to precious for my taste.

    We Aussie curmudgeons have some pride.

    Best Wishes


    • Amen, amen, amen Leon. This is one of those comments that needs to be turned into a stone tablet and then wacked over the head of some many ‘A-listers’ that are delivery crappy products and a bucket of bull to their huge base of poor followers. Your stories are disheartening my friend…and I guess it’s up to guys like us to change the trend, ehhh mate ;-)

      Incredible comment Leon. I really, really appreciate it man.


  31. Hey Marcus…great post. Looks like you’ve already received lots of feedback. But, when is ‘lots’ ever enough?

    My most memorable exchange occurred with a customer that received a mismatched pair of MMA Gloves. Instead of letting us know so we could rectify the wrong, she instead decided to lambast us all over the ‘net. Her reason for not notifying us? She didn’t have the time to babysit an order that should have been shipped properly the first time! Bottom line is that I sent her two left hands (she had received two rights) and told her to keep the extra pair of gloves so that she wouldn’t have to order from us again. We published it in our e-newsletter and ran a contest for the best nickname for this customer. Our customer base loved it. .

    • Mark, what an awesome story man, love that. And btw, I’m a huge MMA guy, have been since the first TUF….But I gotta say, is GSP ever going to finish someone again?? His five rounders are way past old by this point! ;-)

      Anyway, very cool of you to stop by man and leave a comment. MMA fans and businesses are ALWAYS welcome in the Lion’s den ;-)


      • Lol-ed at this one. I am off to check out the equipment, I should definitely go from guns to fists.

        Here is a good one. We ordered some chemicals from a pool company (not yours, had no clue you had one at the time) and instead of PH down they sent us a biiiiig box of PH up. Well, my hubby called them and said what happened and the lady goes “You know it will cost us more to return that thing here, so we will just send you the PH down and you keep the PH up, you might need it”. Do I need to tell you that he has been ordering from them since!?

        • Ha, not a bad story at all Bran!…btw, do you have a salt chlorine generator on your pool? If not, you should really think about it. They are awesome if you’re looking for low maintenance and are tired of messing w regular chlorine.

          • Brankica

            Yup, got it installed before we started working on it. It is finally picking up now, I can see the bottom, lol. We were abroad for 2 years and no one took care of it, you can only imagine the mess :)

  32. Wow, holy cow. Reading through that stream makes me mad… and I don’t even know who that is! Not only is it common courtesy, but that is the exact opposite way to build community.

    First time here. Enjoyed the post!


    • Hi Dustin, thrilled you stopped by sir, as I’ve heard your name before from my very close friend Jason Hughes of Skyward Blog.

      But glad you liked the post man and hope you’ll return to chat again.



      • Marcus, you have just been introduced to Dustin Valencia. He’s a regular on my blog and one of the nicest bloggers you’ll ever meet.

        Dustin, you have just been introduced to the Grand Master of all things blog-related. He will kill me for saying that, but Marcus is one of the absolute best communicators (online and offline, I’m sure) I have ever met! You will NOT be disappointed by this blog, man. I say that honestly!

        • Now that’s one heck of an intro. Thank you Bryan!!!

  33. Hi Marcus,

    I treat my community like gold! Do send thank you’s to first comments, although I had not thought to do this for email subscribers. A fab idea as well. Lots of super information in here. Much appreciated.

    • Hi Giulietta, and thanks so much for stopping in. The fact that you treat each comment with such gratitude is a testament of your feelings toward community, and I give you big props for taking such a stance. Does it take more time? Yes, of course, but as we both know, it’s well worth it. :-)

      Hope you come back again Giuliatta!


  34. Mufasa!! (THAT fits!! Thanks, Ingrid!),

    I am new and I know I am untried, but everything I have been taught, learned and am learning says the right way is the best way. I sit back and wait for my subscriptions from you, Expat and Danny Brown to show up in my inbox while I am trying so hard to save our butts, because I know the right and best ways mixed with perseverance, belief, studying and the continuing learning will work.

    As to your question, “what’s the rudest experience you’ve ever had online?” Well, this isn’t what or where I ever imagined I would be when I grew up, but here I am! I found someone whom I thought was pretty incredible when I first entered Twitter and was genuinely thrilled when this human was getting ready to put a book out. I couldn’t wait! How cool was that?! (for him and us!) I tweeted a little about it, and to this human. Tried to find it, no luck, twitted about the difficulty, found it (!!) and just happened to wonder, so I twitted this human about maybe being allowed to mail it for an autograph. Thus, nasty and arrogant came to the surface. Me being new, I was horrified (and a little scared and way-way embarrassed). It took me a couple days to bull my way back, although I stay very clear of this human. I may not be a “A-Lister” or if truth be known, even very good as yet, but I am also another human that lives on this planet. I look for ways to share what I do have and ways to learn more to help others. (and yes, I want to be very very good at what I do and yes I want to be successful.) Ignorance is only an excuse the first time, after that it is called stupidity.

    Bill Dorman ~ I found YOU on another of Mufasa’s, here, posts. Oh crap, dude- I was horrified!!- fooled me too! So-so glad you aren’t the jerk!! LOL

    Bruce Bates ~My boss, my best friend, has a saying, “16 forever” I think this “kid” is that. A jerk is a jerk is a jerk.

    There are always so many comments from your folks, Marcus, that just blow me away! I find almost ALL of the folks I follow here on your site! LOL They truly are the best. Thanks for reminding us, under it all, that what really counts, (what really really counts) is the good. The good feelings, good teachings, good leaders, good ideas and most of all, good people. I don’t understand why anyone (in it for the money or not) wouldn’t want to be a good person…
    You take care, Marcus and have a fabulous week! (and the rest of you too!)
    ~Alaska Chick!

    • Wow Amber, this comment made me smile the whole way and say ‘Amen Amber!’ by the end.

      You’re so right about ‘what really counts’. Sure, money is cool, but it sucks in terms of fulfillment and true relationships. When you say good feelings, teachings, leaders, ideas, and people– you’re describing exactly why I’m sitting here at 1am in the morning doing this when most of the east coast is asleep— I love my community and what this blog represents.

      As for Bill, he got you too, huh?? LOL, that guy got a lot of people withe this one!

      So thanks for leaving this Amber and I’m sure we’ll be chatting more in the future. :-)


  35. Wow Marcus,

    Sorry you had that particular experience but look how we all benefited from it!

    The rudest experience I’ve had online to date is I had a lady opt-in to my list and download my free products. She then commented on one of my posts calling me all sorts of names because the software I provided (for free) wasn’t compatible with her mac and she couldn’t find a way to interact with me. First off, she got an email from me thanking her for downloading 3 of my freebies (yet she didn’t hit the reply button), she also didn’t go to the bottom of the page where is states “contact me” and send me an email and she didn’t go to my “contact” page on my blog (which is pretty clear she was on because she commented) and send me an email. What did she do? Bashed me on my own blog.

    But I responded nicely, helped her out, she bought my product and then retracted her ugliness in a follow up comment. I took the high ground and took the time to help her and she saw me as a genuine person who wasn’t just in this for a sale.

    I’m fortunate that has been the worse so far and hope it will be the last. I think she was just having a very bad day and needed to take it out on me.

    Treat your followers with the respect they deserve and you will have friends for life! That’s my motto.

    Thanks Marcus for sharing your experience with us.


    • Now see, that’s class and just.. professionalism.. helping out this person anyway Adrienne. Question: do you disclose the requirements or lack of Mac-friendliness for your products? No excuse for this person’s rudeness just curious as I’ve seen this happen on some sites so much that they’ve had to move certain freebie-based support issues elsewhere, add some FAQs – sometimes including that in the ‘thanks for downloading’ message – for those who’d just jump up and down on them in comments w/out trying to fix it, contact through the site, etc. FWIW.

      • Thanks Davina… I appreciate that.

        I do now, I didn’t know that it wasn’t mac friendly but you can download windows and it will work, which she had pointed out. She was just ticked she had to go to that trouble. I actually give 3 products and only 1 is a software. Luckily, this has been my only complaint and everyone else seems to be happy. Or let’s just say, they haven’t complained. But, she bought my product anyway so all turned out good.

        Thanks for that tip, I appreciate it!

    • Dang Adrienne, I think you earned even more respect from all of us that know you from this experience…WOW. I tell ya, that smile of yours must have some serious staying power to have put up with such an ‘unpleasant’ customer.

      You’re a shining example of how to truly show care and respect to your community Adrienne. thanks so much for being the person you are.


  36. What a relief… you didn’t mention my name. LOL

    My biggest turn off is when the comment system requires you to subscribe or log in or do a little dance.
    Sends me barmy and all it secceeds in doing is stopping visitors leaving comments.

    Also hate the overly strict comments policy with threats of being reported to Google and being banned throughout the universe and beyond.

    Show a little respect and make it easy to leave comments.
    Like most of us do.

    BTW – strapline looking good Marcus, looking good.

    • Ha! Thanks Keith, glad you like the new tag man, it was a fun experience. :-)

      Yeah, I’ve never understood comment hoops, obstacles, and moderations. Heck, I’ve never once felt like I wished I had moderation enabled on this site, and as I mentioned to John below, I just passed the 5000 comment mark this week. When it comes down to it, we’ve got to make things easy for our audience and customers. After all, they are the people that pay the bills, right??? :-)

      Thanks for being such a support and great guy Keith. Take care.


  37. Fab that you’ve flagged up the bighead blogger who acts and writes like a jerk (guess we all know one or two). Can’t improve in what you say Marcus (who can most of the time?) but what I feel is blogging is like real friendship so let’s see how many ‘friends’ or subscribers and comments he has in a year’s time. The lessons he needs will be coming thick and fast over the next 12 months as to build a blog up you first have to grow up. Appreciate your super insights here Marcus and for showing us all how not to connect, share, contribute, and develop a respected reputation with this unique post. Only you could create this amazing angle. How do you do it, really, how do you do it????? Put us out of our misery and fess up.

    • Haha John! I don’t know man! It’s funny you ask this question though about ‘how I do it’. It’s a question that has been coming my way a LOT for a few weeks now and this week it seems to be spilling over. I’m not saying this to brag, because honestly I have no clue why people come to my blog when they could be doing a bunch of other stuff. But hey, you’ll never see me complain man. ;-)

      One thing I know for sure though– Anything in life that stirs emotion in my soul, and sticks with me for more than a few seconds, is worthy of writing about. That’s about all I can offer up as an answer to your question bud.

      But I think you’ll find Thursday’s post an interesting one John. It talks about getting my 5,000th comment on this blog and what it all really means and how it has affected my life. Should be interesting….I hope! ;-)

      Thanks for being so stinking awesome and kind John Sherry :-)


  38. Ok, enough comment bombs from me. Seriously though.. one thing I forgot to mention about the whole ‘blogging for different reasons’ thing on emails is this: Your email could have been the biggest, bestest one this guy ever earned, but he’ll never know. Keyword: EARNED.

    It’s another reason I don’t like popup ads hitting me when I first get to a site or have had only 10 seconds to read; can’t possibly have made up my mind on that and the site hadn’t done a thing to earn that yet. Granted I’m applying my own bias (I rarely sub to anything; it’s Reader, Twitter for me) it’s just not for me. That said, subscribing to your weekly does of sales tips Marcus; I expect to be fully successful in work and life by the end of next month. Or else. ;-)

    • Ha Davina, you’ve managed to make me smile again, as you always do. :-)

      But I’m very much with you when it comes to pop-ups. Yeah, sure, I know they work. But guess what else, they freaking bug the snot out of me and throw me off of rhythm when I’m simply doing me best to start or continue reading an article.

      I may eat these words, but I will never, ever, have a pop-up affecting the feel of my site.

      Thanks for all lady!!


      • I did my rant on the popup ads not too long ago (may RT it later, for the heck of it), just annoying and spammy to ask for that sale (email address, subscription, tweet) before I even know you, before it’s been earned. Glad I could make you smile, much better than a WTH? face. ;-)

        • Okay, I am on my way THIS MINUTE to disable my PopUp Domination – too many bloggers I respect and admire have given those blasted things the “stink-face” so I’m taking it as a sign. I actually really hate them too (have never signed up when I came across them & ALWAYS close out of them immediately), but I was advised that it was a good way to get the ball rolling with subscriptions to my new blog.
          But I agree that even if they work, for every 1 person who signs up, I’m probably turning 10 more away! No thank you!
          I have been “shown the way” ;-) by the fine people of this community that building relationships is the way to go – NOT list pimpin’.

          • Popups I think annoy most people anyway, but when it’s the nanosecond I hit a blog and don’t have a clue who you are.. to hit me with the ebook or newsletter advertising, must confess… it doesn’t send me to my ‘want to stay and read, much less give you my email address’ place. One idea I’ve seen well executed Tisha is a post-comment Thank You page. If you check out Brankica’s site, and post she has one for 1st time commenters. That is where I think it makes more sense to ask for the ‘sale’ or subscription if you’re really wanting a strong CTA for that. FWIW.

  39. GREAT Article, it should be required reading for many of todays’ bloggers.

    • Appreciate the kind words Bill, and hope you make a trip back to these parts again in the future ;-)


  40. Great reminder to Be nice!… and rigorously honest. I’m always learning something here. Thanks for sharing

    • Amen to that Rob. Forget all the other stuff, let’s just be nice already!! ;-)

      Thanks for stopping by..


  41. Wow,

    I came across your website from a tweet and I am glad that I stopped by. I have never had a bad experience with a blogger. As a fellow blogger myself I can not imagine treating people like that. How do you expect to be successful. Maybe the guy just likes talking to the open air. He will never get followers otherwise.

    • Hey Nina, and thanks so much for stopping by :-) Yeah, I think this guy certainly has his issues, and sadly I doubt he’ll ever even read this post, but oh well, such is life I guess. But at least you and I can be reminded of the importance of kindness– and just what a difference it can make.

      Again, thanks for your comment Nina and I hope to see you around these parts again. :-)


  42. Marcus,

    It’s pretty amazing that you’ve only met one jerk online so far. But maybe this is a testimony to your pure perception more than the reality of the blogosphere. I’ll just say that I’ve come upon more than one! :)

    There are some awesome lessons in this list. #6 was a practical lesson for me as I never realized that having a contact form in addition to a contact email would be valuables. #8 is also, I feel, a valuable message for young bloggers. Wishing the stand-0ut, some of them go the rude, crude, and arrogant route. It might draw some people, but certainly not me.

    I aspire to follow the advice you offer here because I want to be part of creating a kinder and happier world and the blogosphere is one reflection of the greater cosmos.

    As always, so well written, clear, and from the heart. Thank you.

    • I aspire to follow the advice you offer here because I want to be part of creating a kinder and happier world and the blogosphere is one reflection of the greater cosmos.

      This statement Sandra really just hit the nail on the head for me, as I absolutely feel exactly what you’re saying here. And although it may sound cheesy or silly to some, I absolutely believe such goals are attainable and a huge difference can be made.

      You’re so kind to stop by and leave this wonderful comment Sandra. Thank you. :-)


  43. Crazy man. Just Crazy.

    Presents you with some good CONTRAST to work from, eh? Without the dark.. we wouldn’t enjoy the light so much. Without this cheesehead, we wouldn’t have this opportunity to refresh us on the basic A-Z on how to make your blog SOAR! And add, if I may.. some awesome tools to our repetoire! I didn’t know about Gravity Forms.. until TODAY!!!

    Bravo Sir, Bravo. Way to make lemonade out of a sour lemon!

    • Kerilyn, my super-fav friend…it always brings me a smile to see you and your wonderful energy stop by for a visit. :-)

      It’s funny how little experiences, especially negative ones, can’t be turned into (as you said so well) lemonade…but boy is it important to have such an approach to life, ya know?!

      Glad you liked the Gravity Forms. They’re so professional and clean. Work great. Way better than the standard forms and plugins.

      big hugs,


  44. Okay this will be my last comment on this thread, because I gave people entirely the wrong idea when I made my original post. First of all, no I am not a blogger who seeks to build a community, however that makes no mistake for rudeness I full agree.

    As to the plugin I mentioned, I don’t personally email my subscribers. hardly ever and when I do its usually similar to “I am about to make a blog entry about this new program XYZ. Before I do however I want all my subscribers to get first access to this program ….”

    That aside, there really seem to be a large number of people here who don’t think the shock factor/rude factor works. The fact is it sadly DOES work. Not only does it work, it can work better then any other methods if done… correctly (not sure correctly is the right answer).

    The biggest rude shock factor I ever heard of ended the guy in a lot of legal issues, after he had made countless TENS OF MILLIONS from the practice! I don’t know any others who can claim ten of millions. Granted this was NOT a blog, but still…

    Thats how well shock rude factor can work. Bet you would never have thought that possible. :)

    • Bruce, your comments have made me smile quite a bit man. Not because they’re ‘funny’ per se, but your resilience deserves a serious round of applause, and you’ve really taken this whole conversation up about 10 notches.

      But I must tell you Bruce, for such a ‘non-community’ guy, you sure do seem to enjoy mingling with this great community!! :-) :-) :-) (Sorry man, just had to say it)

      All your points have been well made man and if you’re ever looking to take me to task again, I’d be thrilled to have you over for a visit— as there’s not enough people out there with your chutzpah Bruce ;-)


    • I remember that NYT piece Bruce, the horrid eyeglass troll who rigged the SEO game by being as nasty and douchey as possible. Think he had some legal issues after that piece ran. Anyway .. agree with Marcus that your comments were a welcome addition, would be cool to see you again.

  45. Hi Marcus – At least you got a great blog post out of a bad experience!

    Life is short. While I am human and would have imagined slapping this boy for a split second, I would’ve quickly come to my senses and realized the stupidity of investing any mind-space or emotions in someone like this. It would be a complete waste of time.

    The world is full of idiots… we are surrounded by them. I choose to invest the little time I have on this planet finding people like you and many others here in this community who I can learn and grow from and those folks that I can give back some blessings to.

    In the big scope of things, people like this don’t matter. They will have no impact on who you are or where you’re going. They pretty much just take up air and space and don’t deserve to take up anymore resources.

    I would give every blogger in this community an honorable mention for treating others with kindness and equality. This community is one of the best on the social web and it’s reflective of the person behind it… The Sales Lion!!!

    Cheers Marcus : )

    • Great points, as always Mark. I think if there is one thing I’m pretty good at, is quickly letting go of anger in general. In the case of this guy though, it was so downright perplexing that I couldn’t help but to write about it (plus I knew it would be a decent little conversation piece ;-) )

      But you’re so right about this community. In fact, it’s my opinion that it’s setting the bar in many ways for the rest of the blogosphere when it comes to support, help, networking, promotion, etc. I’ve watched so many great people grow so much over the last six months that it’s simply mind-boggling by this point.

      Thanks for all Mark, appreciate you very much sir. :-)


  46. Wow, that just ain’t cool! You should have roared down the e-mail so this kid (I assume it’s a kid) would have cowered from the awesome ferocity of The Sales Lion!

    Anyway, thanks for the mention brother, I appreciate it. Young whippersnappers like me and Christina, as well as many others, choose to be warm and friendly because it comes naturally to us. We want to help others, out of the goodness of our hearts. We’re the kind of kids that would help an old lady across the road (before idly mentioning our blogs lol)

    I like what you did here as it reinforces a belief of mine, that you can learn something from anyone. It doesn’t matter how well (or unwell) they treat you, the way they react provides insights into human behaviour. Why was this blogger so abrupt? Could it be a bad day? Do they always talk like that? Analysing someone’s behaviour can yield a few interesting results, and it’s good that you asked why it was “Subscribe by e-mail or nothing”

    Keep producing gems of writing Marcus, it suits you ;-)

  47. Hi Marcus,
    What a crazy experience! Thankfully, I’ve never had anyone treat me in such a disrespectful way, but I have seen the type you’re talking about in my online travels. There is definitely a lot of arrogance out there in the blogosphere and sometimes it’s evident in the blogger just saying nothing (i.e., not responding to comments on their blog or in email queries, etc.)
    A couple of bloggers who I consider to be two of the biggest around, Pat Flynn and Srinivas Rao, have both been kind enough to respond warmly to email questions I’ve sent them and I figure if THEY have the time to engage with a newbie like myself, then any blogger, no matter the level should be able to find the time to interact with the community around them.
    I’ve gone back and forth over the past few months with my blogging journey, at times almost throwing in the towel. But through watching you and some of the other bloggers mentioned in your post and in the comments I am repeatedly inspired to press on. To me, THAT’s what blogging is about – creating positive action through your words. Thanks for being a class act Marcus, and for helping to keep my flickering blog flame alive ;-).

  48. some people are just so rude, they don’t deserve your comments, follows, likes, diggs or any other sort of plug. I bet the guy has multi gaming consuls and doesn’t get out much except to Maplins :)

    • Ha! Very well could be true Neal. But either way you shake it, it’s obvious the guy ain’t too happy.

      Appreciate you stopping by man. :-)


  49. Hi Marcus,

    This post reminded me when someone contacted me and told me exactly what you did. I was missing the RSS feed (subscribe to my blog) button. And the woman didn’t want to subscribe by email. I did exactly the opposite of “blogger x”. I wrote an email and said thank you for letting me know, and I told her that I just added the button and that I really really appreciate her telling me about it (because I had actually forgot all about it).

    I really enjoy people telling me about mistakes I am making. That’s how we get better at what we’re doing. There are so many things to learn, and being open to what other people know, is the best way to learn and to build a community.

    I haven’t met that many arrogant and rude people online. Well, maybe I have, but I tend to forget about them very fast. Usually, I understand right away if I’m going to continue to talk to a person or not. In your case, I would probably not have written the second email. I would just go away. But on the other hand, everyone deserves a second chance :-)

    By the way, now I’m going to add a signature to my email. I’ve forgotten all about it, and decided to add one when I read Tristan’s post a while ago, but now it’s time to do it. Thanks a lot for reminding me :-)

    • Very well said Jens! I’m with you man. Over the many months since I first started blogging, I was doing many, many things wrong at first. Heck, I’m sure I’m still doing lots of stuff wrong but like you, I’m willing to listen, and luckily, there are great people out there willing to teach those that simply don’t know.

      You’ll like that email signature though Jens. It’s easy and with Wisestamp, you can set up multiple– one for work, one for family, one for your blog, etc.

      Good luck and thanks for all!!


  50. Hi Marcus,
    You’re just in time.
    We’ve talked about a similar fact with some friend today.
    It seems like it’s not an isolated sheep provoking annoying reactions towards other people.
    The good thing is that this not so dramatic experience, reminds us the principles of a traditional community living on the new medium.
    Nothing is more important about the exchanges you’ve got with your recipient.

    If we look further, those same persons are not capable to share more than in their own field, and they finally stopped in front of two options:
    – stay relevant and open themselves to the world (that underneath the points you’ve made)
    – or merely hide themselves
    Finally they are nothing but human people that didn’t get the chance to evolve correctly in a healthy ecosystem.
    But once they will follow us.

  51. I really enjoyed reading this article. And I agree with the power of a thank you…and reaching out to your readers! Thanks for sharing.

    • Hi Emily, so glad you took a second to stop by and comment. Yes, the Power of TY is one of the greatest tools on earth IMO, and can’t be used enough.

      Cheers and come back again soon, :-)


  52. Nicely put. I had to deal with an a– hole a while back, but I dealt with his or her a– in my own way. I think that is why I follow more seasoned bloggers, because they have been around longer and I can actually learn something. That’s not to say that younger bloggers don’t have what it takes, but for that nut-job to gloat about his “short-lived” fame off some other blog was being a bit presumptuous.

    I am still surprised to see some blogs that don’t have the necessary functions on their blog to make it easier for customers to connect with you anyway.

    You list was the “dummy proof list” to make sure you blog doesn’t fail.

  53. Marcus, what a story, man! I haven’t – thankfully – been exposed to such a closed-minded blogger, but I have had those who I deeply admired in social media who refused to acknowledge I had even asked a question of them, much less give a response.

    I think you do a pretty amazing job at showcasing just what an online community should look like, and I’m honored to share that space on this blog! Great attitude, my friend!

    • That’s very, very kind of you Bryan. Honestly man, I have no idea what so many great people take time out of their day to visit TSL, but I sure as heck appreciate it.

      Thanks for stopping in my friend.


  54. Marcus,

    I don’t appreciate you writing an entire post about the things I do wrong. Do you think this is a good way to make me feel welcome in your community? lol! I can’t believe that is an actual experience you had from someone who calls themself a blogger. The lessons you learned from this situation are timeless and I needed to read them so I don’t make the same mistakes others has made before me. Great post!

  55. Marcus!
    This is the first time I ever followed a discussion after I commented! Oh wow! THIS is my dream and I am so …glad (what an inadequate word!) that this group of humans I’ve already mentioned (!) are the ones I found! Listen to your people! That’s community, all right. (It’s also family!)
    ~Alaska Chick!

    • I’m honored Amber, I really am. Thanks so much for hanging out and being a part of the community here. :-)

      Come back soon!!


  56. Wow. I’m amazed that people act like this in the blogosphere. As somebody who takes quite a bit of pride in the connections Ive built with people, it’s needless to say that people like this will never make my cut for people I want to associate with. I’ve received the occasional email or comment that is like that. One guy said “where the hell is the search button on your blog? you expect me to search myself.” This was some guy who had never been to my site before. I figured why waste time with people like this. I’m all for constructive criticism but there are some trolls out there. One thing I learned from John Falchetto is that you should be open to interacting with people whether or not you’ll ever do business with them and believe me that philosophy has paid off in spades for me and many other people.

    • Great points Srini. I’m sure for someone like yourself, who spends so much time hearing from incredible bloggers that ‘get it’, it’s mystifying why anyone would have this approach. And yes, JF really has such a wonderful social approach, he literally sees the big picture as well as anyone I’ve met.

      Good luck with the move and surf my friend. :-)


  57. Hey Marcus,

    This was a really helpful list. I’ve been back and forth on trying to keep a blog for a while, and I’ve been doing a little better, but haven’t really figured out how to include all of the things that would make the site more useful for others….

    Also, god forbid my blogging gets better and I begin adding more value to people’s lives…I don’t want to piss them off.

    Take it easy!

    • Ha Dave! Good point man. Glad you liked the list and I do hope you find the blogging success you’ve been looking for. Really appreciate you stopping by and hope you come back again. :-)


  58. As you know Marc we are just starting out, and believe it or not, have never though of a subscription or feed! We will be adding that to our site ASAP.

    Thanks for the great idea/reminder!

    • Sweet Rob! Glad you got some more tips man. It’s little by little, but you’re making it happen. Keep it up bro! :-)


  59. Awesome post Marcus! I think you can often divide business outlooks into either having a transactional focus or a relationship focus. The same seems true in blogging; only in blogging there is no upside to being transactional. A used car dealer can focus on quick sales and still make a living, since in his industry repeat customers are not the standard. (Though I think a used car dealer who did focus on relationships could slay the transactional types, a transactional approach does still work in that industry.)

    In blogging, what’s the point? There is no quick sale. There is only content, community and relationships. What is he going to do after getting your email? Wow you with his endless supply of amazing free content while mixing in a tactful sales pitch once in awhile? Doubtful. He showed you his attitude towards potential readers, and I am sure the emails you would have received would have been one hard-sell after another.

    Since I am officially comment number 171 on this post, I would like to offer some advice to the rest of the blogosphere: If The Sales Lion ever offers you a suggestion on bettering your blog, you should probably listen.

    • Since I am officially comment number 171 on this post, I would like to offer some advice to the rest of the blogosphere: If The Sales Lion ever offers you a suggestion on bettering your blog, you should probably listen.

      When I read this Adam I laughed and laughed man. Seriously, it gave me quite the snicker and I appreciate your words.

      I love how you broke it down though in terms of relationship based vs transaction based. I’d never quite looked at it like that but it makes complete and total sense, the only problem, as you said, is so few embrace the correct paradigm.

      Adam, I’m so very glad you’ve stopped by and hope you make a visit back soon. :-)


  60. Marcus,

    Thanks for the blogging etiquette article.

    It’s amazing how some bloggers miss the obvious relationship building part of the equation that it takes to be a good blogger. Great advice to follow! Thanks!

    Take care and wishes for your success.
    Harv Whitman

    PS check out my blog when you have time. I’d love some feedback.

    • Hi Harv, so glad you got something out of the article, as there are principles found here that will never grow out-of-date.

      I’ll do my best to check out your blog sometime, I always love reading the powerful words of others.

      Have a great weekend.


  61. G’Day Marcus,
    I just had to have another crack. It’s a gorgeous Autumn morning here in spectacularly beautiful Sydney. Thought that you’d like to know that. It even brings a smile to to an old curmudgeon’s lips.

    Now Marcus, I just wanted to say that all those gurus who talk about “the power of the headline” should have a look at the headline you used on this post. What a success.

    Congratulation! Look out Rupert Murdoch. As I always say, “pools are jewels” And “no,” you can’t have that. Of course, if “you pay most foully for’t” as Lady Macbeth or Banquo or someone like that said, I’d be prepared to reconsider.

    Anyway, I’m off to sit in the sun and dream of writing posts that get cohorts of comments. D’ya like cohorts? You can have that.

    Make sure…….



    • Cohorts…Hmmm, yes Leon, I love that man!! Funny though, my friend was joking with me yesterday about my blog titles. The way I see it, my writings may stink, so I might as well do something right! ;-)

      Hope the beach treats you good my friend. You’re the best Aussie I know Leon. :-)


  62. Man, almost 180 comments; I’m not sure I have anything new to share since I read all the comments as well.

    I’ll say this then. People reap what they sow, and consequences of actions always seem to come back on you. I’m glad you didn’t link to the guy, though I probably would have written the name. At the same time, lots of folks from here would have gone over to see what the idiot’s site was about & his traffic would have increased and given him more prominence than he deserved, so I applaud your restraint.

    At least he’s young enough (it is definitely a “he”, correct?) to possibly have enough time to learn better lessons in some fashion. From where… well, that’s another issue.

    • Haha Mitch, yes, ‘he’ is no doubt a he. I can’t imagine any lady acting that shallow and arrogant actually.

      But you’re right, I couldn’t mention the guy for a few reasons. Fact is, we were all young once, and looking back myself, I was pretty stupid at times. Heck, I still am for that matter!! Much better to just turn the whole experience into a positive one. And with all these comments, maybe the dude was inspired, you never know!!

      Thanks so much for stopping by again Mitch! :-)


  63. That post from Tristan is haunting me, Marcus. I need to update my email signature, and start using it again. Either that, or I need to stop reading great blogs like his and yours. ;)

    I’ve been horrible about contact boxes too. It’s interesting that you receive the majority of your contacts this way. I’m sure if I don’t add it this weekend I’ll read 10 more posts telling me I need it. Sigh, the peer pressure! ;)

    I’ve used Feedburner in the past for my RSS syndication so it came with an email subscription option. Since I was going with Aweber for my mail lists on my latest blog, I was just going to use it for this as well (add that to my list for the weekend too). What’s been your experience in terms of RSS reader subscribers vs. email subscribers? Are there many who use the email option?

  64. Jon


    Great lessons delivered by The Sales Lion :) You know what’s kind of scary? I know EXACTLY who you are talking about and I’ve been thinking these same things of him for over a month now.

    The way he writes and interacts in comments is a huge put off. He’s caustic. He’s abrasive. He is arrogant, not confident. I tried giving him a chance and found the interaction hollow. It’s sad but that’s just how some people are.

    But heck, I’m not perfect.

    What intrigues me is he didn’t see the value of getting to know you more. From what I can tell, he normally checks out the websites of people who comment and email. At the very least to critique them and then push his services.

    But that’s not engagement. It isn’t even helpful. When you go on the attack, people put their guard up. They don’t welcome you in and they aren’t as receptive to your criticisms.

    Maybe he’ll find his rhythm, maybe he won’t.

    The sad thing is, people like you will never climb aboard any project or product he releases. That type of dissent spreads like a virus. People who value community and engagement will read/hear about this and will leave him and people like him in the cold.

    We’re in a highly social space where respect, etiquette, and friendliness are the new currency. Get with the program or be left on your own.

    Thanks for always writing about the big issues, Marcus.


    • Jon, I tell you what man, I can see just by your description that you do know who I’m talking about here. And I’m glad to see you’ve reached the same conclusions I have. The dude needs to watch a couple of comedies or something to laugh a little.

      Like you said, none of us are perfect. We all can improve. But when it’s our goal to act high and mighty and feel as if we’re better than others…..well then we have a serious problem.

      Anyway, tremendous comment Jon, you always have such a way of adding to the discussion. Hope your Saturday is a great one.


  65. Hahahaha IDIOT.

    If he had any idea who he was talking to, not that it bears any relevance here, but still, that does make this that much funnier.
    I remember telling one of my readers that they should respond to comments on their blog after I visited and commented (and noticed he never replied)
    He told me (nicely unlike your friend) that responding to comments was a sign of weakness and that he was cementing his authority by not replying.. RIIIIIGGGGHHHHHHTTTTTT?
    Dont listen to the guy YOU follow who has all this community, no what does he know!?!

    We try to help, but really.

    The bloggers that come to mind when i think of selflessness in the extreme are quite numerous actually, but the original, and still the best is Kristi Hines I think.
    She exemplifies the ideology of giving in order to receive.

    Yeah yeah, I suppose you aint too bad yourself there ;)

    • Hey Alex, love your story man (amazing how many ding-dongs there are in this world!) and words here. Well said bud. And I fully agree about Kristi. I found her only recently (not sure what took me so long) and she’s very, very impressive, with a tremendous community.

      I guess we can only keep helping man ;-)

      Have a great week bud.


  66. Hi Marcus,

    I’m a first time commenter on your blog & get through kikolani’s friday fetching links.

    First up of all it was really absurd from the blogger X to not reply you in a friendly manner. But I appreciate you for not dislcosing his name otherwise he’d have loosen his credibility around his community. Really, as I was going through your each line & adding all those tools & extensions to my blog which were not there. I hope he learned this post from you & might improve his behaviour for others who may come to his blog.

    Bookmarked & added to Google Reader :)

    • Hey Hyderali, welcome to the community here, Kristi was so kind to mention me in her post.

      Yeah, I certainly could have smeared blogger X pretty well, but it is my honest hope that he wakes up and smells that thing we all call ‘common sense’ and ‘kindness’. But I guess we’ll see ;-)

      Thanks so much for your comment and hope you stop by again.


      • Its certainly not impossible to wake up and smell that call. I can attest to that first hand ;)

        • You’re a cool cat Bruce, I’m sure glad I’ve gotten the chance to get to know you man. :-)

  67. Marcus, I was really impressed when you took the time to email ME after noticing some things on my blog — after not knowing me from Adam. You made 2 suggestions for plugins that were extremely helpful, and I did them right away. I even had a problem with one of them and you had the patience to explain it to me.

    I’ve been in business a long time and know a lot of things, but blogging — and creating a blogging community — isn’t one of them. I know I’m a newby there, and I really appreciate your willingness to help.

    The guy must be young — or an old idiot who never learned that you need to be open. No one knows everything, and it sounds like he thinks he does. His loss.

    Thank you, Marcus, for the specific assistance to me, as well as your ongoing stellar stuff!

    • That’s very kind of you to mention Marcia, but I just can’t help but to want the best for others (especially when they’re incredibly kind people like you), but unfortunately some folks don’t know a good thing when it hits them over the head with a 2×4….But remember I’m always here Marcia to assist you any way I can. I really mean that.

      As always, thanks so much for your comment.



  68. Marcus,
    I totally agree with you in that it makes no sense why some bloggers even blog. What motivates these “chuckleheads” to blog when they could probably spend better time watching paint dry!

    But you know what….it is the 80/20 rule here in action. 80 percent of bloggers put up their blogs and then crash and burn and do nothing going forward. US “20 percenters” are too busy stimulating our blog community and spread great value to the world and appreciating our audience. I get great satisfaction that I am helping people when I blog.

    I think your blog is outstanding and I say keep up the great work here.


  69. Thankfully I have never had such encounters. In the “real” world someone would eventually get this kid straight, sadly it might never happen in the blogosphere.

    • You’re right Michael, it may never happen. Let’s just hope it does though before it’s too late.

      Thanks for dropping by :-)


  70. Claire

    I would like to thank @therealsupermum on twitter for being kind enough to give me an invitation code to Triberr. I will be signing up when I have access to my laptop again tomorrow. I have many exciting plans for my nascent local food blog which is still in its early development. In my experience there are many helpful people in the ether you just have to be open to them.

  71. Well now, I’ve been called many things, but “the Biggest Blogging Jerk ever.” That’s a new one. :D

    Glad to now I’m “destined to fail in the blogosphere.” I appeared on Copyblogger yesterday and captured another 100 email addresses …

    No seriously, I like you Marcus, and it was rude of me to be so terse. I should have given you my Feedburner URL, or at least explained my reasons for promoting email. I distinctly remember being impatient with you for no legitimate reason. You’ve made it clear to me that polite communication is definitely an important aspect of blogging, and something I need to work on. Thanks for the good read, the encouragement, and the engaging comments. I love a lively rant.

    • You’re quite an interesting cat Martyn, and I’m glad you stopped by here to chat. I did not expect you’d ever read this article.

      Here’s what I don’t understand about you man– You’re extremely intelligent. You’re have the potential to be a thought leader in this industry. You’re a motivated guy. And you actually have talent.

      Yet, at the same time, you come across as very arrogant. Why is that? (Note, when I wrote this post, at least 5 people emailed me and knew exactly who I was referring to based on what they’d picked up from you as well.) Why do you feel the need to mesh those two sides? As one that is looking for greatness, and has the foundation to build such a thing, why do you not strive for personal development in that area of your life as much as you do in your blogging escapades? Seriously man, it’s like you’ve got a ‘blogger’s little man complex’, if that makes sense.

      What gives?

      • I probably stumbled on your blog a few months ago, and then again recently when Halpern linked to your article that discussed his techniques. When Gini tweeted your latest article last night (excellent post by the way), I just HAD to check out some of your popular articles. Took a few minutes to realize you were talking about me here. I’d forgotten all about this.

        Interesting. Five people identified me based on this dialog? Wow. Guess I’ve been stepping on people’s toes without realizing it. I’ll confess to being sharp, but I didn’t know this is coming across as arrogance. Is there a fine line between being authoritative and being a jerk?

        Guess I was trying to be like Seth Godin with you. Whenever I email him, he writes back with short, terse sentences. Once he even told me I was emailing him too much, and didn’t answer my question. It stung badly, but I still like him. Would you consider him a jerk for writing the way I did with you? Does it make a difference if you’re famous?

        I hear you’re going to Blog World. I’ll be there Friday and Saturday. Maybe we’ll get to meet in our proteins. ;)

        • I see two major flaws with this communication style Martyn:

          1. Seth has earned the right to act however he wants. We read his stuff. We know his style. It’s direct. That’s how he rolls, and thus that’s what we expect.

          2. You’re attempting to be someone you’re not.

          Why should it be a goal to communicate like Seth Godin? Look, I love the guy, but my interpersonal skills are me. Do I want to emulate his business acumen? Yes, in many ways, but when it comes to how we address others, let’s not forget who we are man.

          But to answer your question, the higher the authority, the more allowance for being terse/jerky/whatever. Notwithstanding, I can tell you that Brogan is not even close to that style, and he has a bit of authority as well.

          So just be Martyn bro. Prove yourself with your content (which speaks for itself nicely). And being warm never hurt anyone in my opinion. ;-)

          I’d love to meet up at BWLA. That would be great!


          • Cool, see you then. I’m warmer in person anyway. :D

            • Short? Yes. Terse? Maybe. Jerk? No way!

              I’ll vouch for him….

              Way to own up to it Martyn. I recognized the smart even without the charm but I’m a bottom line kind of guy. You do good work and will do just fine in life.

              I would still be sitting in the dark staring at the mess on my computer screen without this sassy guy.

              • I believe you Brian. I think Martyn has potential, and I also think he has matured a lot over the last year.

                Thanks for taking a moment to stop by,


  72. I believe Martyn is one of the young bloggers with more potential right now. He’s very smart and works hard. All he needs is to be himself a little bit more and try to be less like Brian Clark, Derek Halpern or Seth Godin.

    He’ll get that when he’s a little bit more mature or gains experience in life.

    • I absolutely agree with you there Cristina. :-)

  73. In the early days of e-mail, there were tons of “flame wars” ignited by perceived insults, slights, and poor communication skills. These were otherwise level-headed people going at one another like banshees. It began to dawn on people that electronic communication, instant as a rise in blood pressure, was an incredibly “hot” medium. Came the emoticon :) to help, and people started to choose their words more wisely. Yes, flaming still occurs but usually for more concrete reasons. The blogging world is now as polite as the antebellum South, bowing and scraping quite a tad. I do enjoy some sassy repartee once in awhile. And if someone wants to express a strong opinion in civil tones, bring it on. But etiquette is alive and well in the blogosphere and instant communication still demands going a little overboard to be like Fonzi and stay cool. Oh my, I almost jumped the shark. I meant to say, what a sweet conversation we all is having. :)

    • Hey Astro! I see you’re an emoticon fan as much as I am ;-) (And thank goodness for them, yes!)

      But your point is very well made. Etiquette is alive and well, and we mustn’t ever forget that.

      Thanks so much for stopping by Astro,


  74. Thanks for teaching us the lessons of Blogging…This will be very helpful for me….

  75. Like what you are doing here Marcus. I guess sparing some time to look at other blogs (even if other people consider it a waste of time) can really help with posts ideas.

    Glad that Martyn learnt something from all this. I also big u up for approving Bill’s comment (how did you react when you first saw it in your dashboard? scared you a little? I guess no, considering one of the posts you wrote about bloggers who blog not to make friends or fame’s sake)

    Happy blogging.

  76. LOL! I had the same experience the only difference is he didn’t reply at all… I was looking for his rss and subscription because it has an error.. i tried to email him but his email was expired. I tried contacting him through his comment section but what the….
    instead of replying to me he just posted my private comment for him(which i told him to delete after reading).. grrr..

  77. That kid really needs some lessons on respect and the law of karma. Everthing is really about relationship-building. Just sad that there are those who really don’t know what they are doing.

    • Karma is real, no doubt Melonie, and boy have I seen it in all its forms since become so active online these last 3 years.

      Thanks so much for dropping in :-)


  78. Crikey, Marcus – is this what they call an ‘evergreen’ article?

    But you are soooo right, there’s no excuse for bad manners, ignorance or arrogance whether online or off. Sadly too many – though optimistically I still believe it’s only a minority – of people still think such behaviour is OK.

    Right – moan over!

    Thank you so much for the pointers about email signatures and Gravity Forms – I’m on it! That’s today’s blog job sorted.

    And needless to say if you did decide to drop by my site and say ‘Hello’, you would indeed get a very warm welcome… I need a reader!

    • Hi Linda!! So glad this post helped a bit and here’s to you and your blog!! :-)


  79. Well Marcus you have ‘killed’ this guy by highlighting obvious suicidal mistakes he’s making in his blogging efforts, funny enough I’m guilty of most of all the things he does except that I’m not rude to people who contact me.

    Thanks for the insights shown so far, I’ve learnt quite a few especially building an online community! Thanks for sharing!

    • More than welcome Paul, so glad to help :-)

      And good luck with your online journey!!!


  80. Gr8 post. Agreed. I happened to be on the phone with my favorite blogger a few minutes ago and he told me you were a great guy hence that is why I came! Glad I did.

    I have found some great blogs but many seemed to be coupled with arrogance which attracts me about as much as a head-on collision with a Mack Truck.

    So, my favorite blogger that possesses zero ego, tremendous work ethic, extremely talented in his niche… and a great frickin cat to boot is:

    John Aguiar- Money Dummy Blog-

    p.s. Don’t tell anyone, but If u speak to JP, tell him he owes me 20 bucks for writing this recommendation. He still owes me 40 bucks from the last 2! (for anyone that misses the sarcasm THIS IS A JOKE)

    Gr8 post my man,


    • MJ, what’s up bud? ;-)

      Yeah, Aguiar is a good dude and really “gets” twitter too. The guy knows what’s up, that’s for sure.

      Hope you’ll stop by again man,


      • Most definitely will. Have a gr8 weekend my man.-M

  81. Marcus I don’t agree with you that this blogger should have an RSS subscribe button or feed. Personally I feel it’s useless and I only want folks who come to my site to leave their name and email address in exchange for more value. To me once someone is in my email list it is a way to qualify them as a serious lead.

    That said the blogger should have responded to your email with more class.

    • Yes, to each their own Owen. Personally, I just feel we should make it easier, not harder, for our readers to consumer our content– in their chosen method.

      Thanks for stopping by,


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